It’s All About the Clash
Issue   |   Tue, 09/25/2012 - 23:12
Image courtesy of style.com

Fashion trends are everchanging; they can be hard to stay on top of, and even harder to understand how they started in the first place. A fashion “trend” is a particular look or article of clothing that gains popularity within a large group for a specific amount of time. The roots of a trend can be hard to pinpoint. However, many can be traced back to celebrities and other figures in the public eye. When an admired star (let’s say Princess Kate) is photographed sporting a new look, the item flies off of shelves within days. Celebrities are idolized, and anything they wear automatically looks fabulous. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all look like the stunning faces that plaster our televisions, billboards and bus stops? If we mimic their style, maybe we’ll look as amazing as they do. And thus a trend is born.

For the upcoming season, some exciting trends are hitting the runways and sidewalks with a force to be reckoned with. The first of these is the leather skirt. Faux or real, leather is a fabulous way to toughen up a staple. The material is edgy and cool, and in the form of a skirt maintains a very elegant look. They are a great transition piece, moving seamlessly from fall to winter or day to night. Sure, leather can be intense, but juxtaposed with girly pieces it can create a mixture of masculinity and femininity that is a trend all on its own.

Women’s fashion has recently taken a masculine turn…for the better. Androgynous style involves mixing feminine and masculine pieces and silhouettes. Gender ambiguity has always been a concept of interest, and this appeal is in full force when materialized in apparel. Wearing androgynous pieces like tailored suits, ties of every style (thank you, Kardashians) and hats, is marvelously rebellious. It takes confidence to dress like the opposite gender, and that confidence oozes out of the wearer.

Plaid is a great print for androgynous pieces worn as the leaves change color, and it stands on its own as a fall trend. Plaid isn’t just for schoolgirl uniforms anymore, but has morphed into a sophisticated design with a surprisingly versatile application. Depending on the material, colors and pattern of lines, plaid can be worn casually or formally. For a laid-back look, try skinny jeans in a plaid print, a simple t-shirt and rugged boots for a cool rocker guise. Other great vessels for plaid are tailored dresses, jackets and even rompers.

Another way to wow your beholder is by pulling off the “clash”, a mixture of patterns and prints. When done correctly, it creates a big bang that people can’t look away from…in a good way! The look is risky but when pulled off it’s unbeatable. Sure, people who don’t appreciate your effort will think that you got dressed in the dark, but sometimes that’s a risk you have to take. Mixing prints involves wearing a patterned top and contrasting patterned bottom. A good rule of thumb is to try not to mix different styles of the same print. For example, if you’re wearing stripes on top, try to stay away from stripes on the bottom. Another thing to avoid is going too bright on both ends. A bright color with a crazy print is awesome, but if you’re going to wear a print on your other piece, try to keep the colors more understated.

Need help staying on top of incoming trends? A great way to survey the scene is by stopping by online fashion blogs. Some tend to be written by bored teenagers who take picture of themselves , but others are written by talented people who know what they’re talking about. They guide you to what’s currently hip, and expose you to a bevy of different looks. This can help you tailor what’s already in your closet to what has appealed to you on the sites. Some good ones to check out are Sea of Shoes, Cupcakes and Cashmere, The Man Repeller, The Sartorialist and Refinery 29.

Fashion trends are outliers turned mainstream. When the fad hits the masses, it’s still new and exciting. However, after too many people wear that new item, its allure fades, and the next trend pops up. We’re forced to push those once-chic items to the back of our closets and start up the long road of trending once again.

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Comments
Intrigued reader (not verified) says:
Wed, 09/26/2012 - 05:35

Excellent article. Very well written. Very interested in your personal style. Can't wait to read more from you.

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